[personal profile] 7rin
I didn't write this, unfortunately.

http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2013/01/14/trenka

January 14, 2013

By Jane Jeong Trenka

@ MPR News

Jane Jeong Trenka was adopted from Korea to Minnesota in 1972. She is author of the memoirs "The Language of Blood" and "Fugitive Visions," and coeditor of the anthology "Outsiders Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption." She is studying for a master's degree in public policy at Seoul National University and is president of TRACK (Truth and Reconciliation for the Adoption Community of Korea).

Hey, kids in foster care. You might be wondering why Americans are raising a stink about Russia banning adoptions while you are still waiting for a family. You might feel like no one wants you.

And why wouldn't you feel that way?

There are 58,000 of you living in institutions, 104,236 eligible for adoption and 400,540 in foster care. But I can recommend some ways to make yourself as precious and loveable as one of those Russian orphans. Take some tips from an international adoptee! Here's how:

1. Be young. You have no value if you are older than 5. I know — you're 12. But maybe people won't notice if you act young. They'll think you're big for your age. If you expect to be adopted as a preteen, forget it. At that point, all you are is a looming college tuition bill.

2. Be white. That's what the Russians had going for them. But if you can't do that, you can at least not ask to be adopted into a family that speaks Spanish or Laotian or whatever it is you used to speak at home. Language classes are once a week, and culture camp is once a year. Don't confuse tourism with real life. Got it?

3. Be alone. Nobody wants a band of kids that is already a family unit. They are trying to integrate you into them, not be integrated into you. So why are you telling people you have not just one — but two or three siblings? Say goodbye to them and send the youngest ones off to fend for themselves. They probably won't even remember you later. Maybe you can find them in adulthood through Facebook if you're sentimental.

4. Be an orphan. Do you really expect to be adopted you if want to maintain ties with your birth family? People fear your mother showing up at their front door. That is why they like to adopt kids from as far away as possible! "I am a poor orphan. I am a poor orphan." That is your new mantra, and do stop talking about your mother. Not only should you obliterate your memory, but you should also ask your social worker to burn any records that suggest you may have difficulty making adults feel loved and needed in exchange for a home.

Adoption is not about what you want. It's about what adopters want. Get it straight, kids!
[personal profile] 7rin
I'm gonna try to tidy this up to make it more readable, but I suspect if the thread continues, it's gonna wind up being dumped in comments too because I'm gonna run outta character spaces.

How do you feel about adoption?

Jennifer Randazzo Good.

Gloria Orange-Barnett The gift of a safe and loving home to a child in need is truly a gift to oneself.

Lynn Early Brown It is truly a blessing...I was adopted as an infant and my husband and I have adopted both our children thru foster-to-adopt! It is amazing and a gift from God!

Liz Larson-Shidler The best alternative.

Linda Wallin Thrilled! My son comes home from India today with his new son!

Angela Jensen Dunigan We are in the process of my husband adopting my daughter, which will legalize what has already existed for the past nearly 6 years - their father-daughter relationship. I love that she will now have our name too. She's 13 and I can think of no more critical an age for her to have this security of a loving, legal father. I also have loved ones with children whom they adopted at birth. I'm a fan of adoption.

...and then the adoptees start answering )
[personal profile] 7rin
Uploaded by CooDocu on Oct 28, 2011

Biology stands on the brink of a shift in the understanding of inheritance. The discovery of epigenetics -- hidden influences upon the genes -- could affect every aspect of our lives.

At the heart of this new field is a simple but contentious idea -- that genes have a 'memory'. That the lives of your grandparents -- the air they breathed, the food they ate, even the things they saw -- can directly affect you, decades later, despite your never experiencing these things yourself. And that what you do in your lifetime could in turn affect your grandchildren.

The conventional view is that DNA carries all our heritable information and that nothing an individual does in their lifetime will be biologically passed to their children. To many scientists, epigenetics amounts to a heresy, calling into question the accepted view of the DNA sequence -- a cornerstone on which modern biology sits.

Epigenetics adds a whole new layer to genes beyond the DNA. It proposes a control system of 'switches' that turn genes on or off -- and suggests that things people experience, like nutrition and stress, can control these switches and cause heritable effects in humans.

Read more... )

[personal profile] 7rin
(All bolding = my emphasis; all italics = my comment)

From: http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2012/09/13/parents-to-sue-mich-dhs-for-adoption-fraud/
September 13, 2012 6:39 AM

DETROIT (WWJ) - Some Michigan parents are planning to file a federal lawsuit in Detroit Thursday, claiming that the state and adoption agency officials withheld crucial details about the physical and mental disabilities in the children they adopted.

WWJ Legal Analyst and Talkradio 1270 morning show host Charlie Langton said the parents claim their civil rights have been violated.

“There’s a claim that the civil rights of the parents are being trampled upon by the state because of the state’s failure to disclose information. Who is in the best position to gather information about a child when the child is put up for adoption? It is the state. And if the state is not taking on the responsibility of gathering that information and disclosing that information, that becomes a civil rights violation, that’s a federal issue,” said Langton.

Lansing-area attorneys David and Stephen Kallman told the Detroit Free Press officials from the Department of Human Services and adoption agencies routinely withheld medical records and information about financial subsidies for special-needs children, misled prospective adoptive parents about their rights and stonewalled their attempts to seek assistance.

At the time of adoption, they were presented to parents as healthy babies. But in reality, the lawsuit claims many of the children had significant mental and physical health issues after being born to mothers who were addicted to drugs and alcohol — something the parents claim they were never informed of. Other children were handicapped or had diseases – something the parents claim the state also failed to mention.

Some parents claim their adopted children, most of whom were removed from homes of their biological parent or parents by court order, tortured pets, attacked family members and set fires.

The lawsuit also claims that several light-skinned ethnic minority children were “passed” as Caucasian for the sole purpose of depriving them [is that "them" the kids or their buyers?] of federal and state assistance to which they were entitled.

“It would be in the best interest of everybody if the state would disclose whatever information the state knew about these children before they adopted. I mean, disclosure is the name of the game in so many things. We have disclosure laws when you buy a car or a house, so why shouldn’t we have disclosure laws when you adopt a child,” said Langton. [Absolutely, which is why ALL records should be OPEN to ALL adoptees!]

If disclosure laws were in place, Langton said he thinks the number of adoptions would actually increase.

You have to know what you’re buying, what you’re getting. I don’t want to make it on so impersonal terms here, but we’re talking about the life of a child, that if the parents are doing something good for the children, they should know what they’re getting so they can plan ahead accordingly… I think the state has a duty to go out there and investigate the background of this particular child and the family as well. It would help not only people in Michigan, but across the whole country,” said Langton.

Families included in the lawsuit are seeking as much as $13 million.
[personal profile] 7rin
UPDATED: 11:30, 5 November 2011

You could say I’ve lived a lie all my life.

One in which my wife and the Prime Minister are complicit. They call me Michael and apologise for my appalling manners by explaining I’m a dour Aberdonian.

They excuse my waist-busting appetite, saying my father was a fish merchant and that’s why I’m a gannet.

The deception doesn’t stop with them. Michael is the name on my passport, bank card and driving licence.

But if I’m honest, it is an assumed identity. I was not born Michael, but Graeme.

I call Aberdeen my home, but that’s not where I’m from. And the man who brought me up was, indeed, in the fish trade, but he’s not the man who fathered me. I have no idea who that is.

I was born to a single mother in an Edinburgh hospital ward in 1967 and then taken into care. After four months, I was adopted by a child- less couple, into whose home I arrived just before Christmas.

Read more... )
[personal profile] 7rin
The following is going to be a catalogue of shit said to - or about - adoptees in public(ish - relatively) places. Feel free to use in evidence. :}

Headline: Kate's adoptive family scrimped to give her idyllic childhood... yet she was still desperate to find the parents who gave her up - no matter who it hurt
  • Kate Hilpern discovered she was adopted aged five
  • At 18 she tracked down her birth family - but found her mother had died at 19, two years after giving Kate up for adoption
  • Mother-of-two says being cut off from birth family had damaging effects on her identity and self-esteem
  • Kate now campaigns for adoptive children to retain contact with biological family
By Kate Hilpern
PUBLISHED: 23:48, 15 May 2012 | UPDATED: 11:57, 16 May 2012

{quote}
Read more... )
{/quote}

And now for those oh-so wonderful and supportive comments...

First, a charming snippet from Whenever Wherever, Somewhere in the Lone Star, 16/5/2012 21:39
this yearning for some stranger who gave you up because of a biological link is a slap in the face ... I have a few friends who are asian who do not share these issues. None of them have tried to find the biological parent. If I adopt, it will be an asian child. Can't be bothered with the rest of this nonsense. Call it silly or whatever, but either you are my child and I your mum, or not. I am not going to love and sacrifice for over 18 years for some child to come inform me as an adult that they want a relationship with the biological stranger parent.
This made me scratch my head... resident, somewhere in America, 16/5/2012 20:41
Further, you rarely find what you'll think you'll find. My sister in law found her "birth family" and they were a mess. I was not happy.
I'm left scratching my head at this one because the author doesn't tell us how the person whose life it actually involves felt about it - only that they, the poster was aggrieved by it.

Tiffany, USA, 16/5/2012 18:13 shares with us exactly who adoptees should call 'real' family (for the record, all of my families're 'real' - if they weren't, I wouldn't exist because my a'rents didn't give birth to me):
Why on earth would someone want to raise a child as their own, make the sacrifices good parents make and give their whole heart to a child who will someday bring an egg and sperm donor back into the picture, and for what reason?? My heart goes out to this woman's REAL parents, and shame on her for not having the sense to call them.that first.
Matilda, London, 16/5/2012 16:46 makes one of my favourite comments of all, proving the the blank slate theory
" The idea that you can uproot a baby from its birth family, place it with adoptive parents and give it a new identity with no ill-effects is ludicrous." ....................... I disagree with this statement. You can if the baby isn't too old and you never tell the child that it was adopted.
Dinah, Bath, 16/5/2012 16:21 shares the long-standing, old favourite:
Ungrateful.
I feel very saddened for anon, worcestershire, 16/5/2012 15:35 who feels that their a'rents happiness comes before their own, since no child should be responsible for their parents' happiness, and no child should owe ANY of their parents for doing their job as parents...
What a selfish girl to think of herself and what she wanted, I am adopted from about the same age and would never have wanted to upset my Mother and Father with such an action,they and they only deserved to organise and be at my wedding,they put so much into raising me and giving me a great upbringing,they were always there for me and never let me down their whole lives.I owe them everything.
Finally ('cause contrary to popular belief, I do have a life afk :p), Twinkle, Twinkle, 16/5/2012 15:34 reminds adoptees of their place - y'know, second best, abandoned, 'n' unwanted...
Red arrow me all you like on this but I am entitled to my opionion. I would not adopt a child if the rules changes allowing them access to their biological Mother. NO WAY. Why would a couple or single person who cant have a child provide all the love and care to be made to feel second best and a carer so to speak because the child had been given up for adoption. ADOPTION - Given away - no matter what the reasons or how you wrap it up.
[personal profile] 7rin
http://www.adoptioncrossroads.org/SmilingAdoptees.html

Happy Adoptees
By Julie A. Rist


I am not the happy and grateful adoptee that you want me to be. Don’t get me wrong. I was happy and grateful for almost 45 years – or so I believed. Had you asked me then how I felt about being adopted, you might have heard something like, “Great! I am so grateful to my (adoptive) parents for all they did and, no, I am not interested in finding my ‘real’ family. My adoptive family is my ‘real’ family, thankyouverymuch, and they are a wonderful family. I’ve had a wonderful life. Of course, I am grateful to my natural mother for giving me life. Oh, you’re adopting? How wonderful!”

I enthusiastically expressed that view all those years because I needed to convince myself that my life was normal and right and that I was okay. I did it because everyone else wanted me to feel that way, too. And I thought I would die if I ever looked deeper.

Happy children

You’ve seen adopted children who seem to be perfectly happy, too. They smile and have fun just like those whose families are intact. They act happy and, occasionally, they are.

Yes, adopted children smile and laugh. Did you stop smiling after you lost a loved one? Didn’t you still laugh when someone said something funny? Weren’t you still capable of having some fun?

Did you ever smile and act happy to hide your grief?

Of course you did. But even when you smiled, those close to you knew it didn’t mean you were happy. Those close to you accepted and expected your pain and sadness. They did not expect you to be happy about your loss. They gave you something most adoptees do not get: acknowledgement of, empathy for, and permission to express your grief.

What grief?

Read more... )
[personal profile] 7rin
Adoption Issues From a Strengths Perspective
By Deborah H. Siegel, PhD, LICSW, DCSW, ACSW
Social Work Today - July/August 2008 Issue - Vol. 8 No. 4 P. 34

Birth parents, adoptive parents, and adoptees face predictable crises given the life-changing nature of this event. Idealized or deficit approaches don't work, but a strengths perspective does.

Sam is a bright, energetic, enthusiastic 12-year-old boy. His mom and dad, Mary and Mack, love him dearly and are earnest, skilled parents who conscientiously create a nurturing home. Sam thrives; he has a best friend next door, gets Bs in school, attends weekly religious school and prayer services, walks his dog every day after school, and enjoys riding his bike and playing his electric guitar. He and his parents often go on hikes, attend sporting events, and take day trips as a family or with friends. It appears that Sam is doing well because he is adopted.

This description accurately summarizes Sam's life, and so does this: Sam was born with cocaine, marijuana, and alcohol in his tiny body. Sam's birth father, incarcerated shortly after Sam was conceived, has never seen him. The state child welfare agency removed Sam from his mother's custody shortly after birth, and in the first two years of life, Sam lived in four different foster homes before he was legally freed for adoption. Sam's behavior is often impulsive, hyperactive, and inattentive. His classmates tend to steer clear of him because he bumps into them, grabs their things, or blurts out rude comments (e.g., "You're stupid!"). Homework is a daily struggle, as Sam finds it hard to sit still and stay on task. He often forgets, loses, or partially completes his assignments. Lately, his behavior at home has been especially irritable; when his parents prompt him to do a task he doesn't like, he yells, "You're not the boss of me!" and stomps away. He's spending more time alone in his room. It appears that Sam is struggling because he is adopted.

Read more... )

- Deborah H. Siegel, PhD, LICSW, DCSW, ACSW, is a professor in the School of Social Work at Rhode Island College, a clinician specializing in adoption issues, an adoption researcher, and an adoptive parent.
[personal profile] 7rin
Sants, H.J. (1964) Genealogical Bewilderment in Children with Substitute Parents. British Journal of Medical Psychology 37(?). pp.133-141

"In 1964, H.J. Sants ... coined the phrase 'genealogical bewilderment'"

O'Shaughnessy, T. (1994). Adoption, social work and social theory: Making the connections. Brookfield, VT: Ashgate Publishing. (p.119)

Adoption, blood kinship, stigma, and the Adoption Reform Movement: A historical perspective @ http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa3757/is_200201/ai_n9059070/pg_10/

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